Andrew Neethling's Prototype Polygon Dual Slalom Bike - Sea Otter 2016
Out of all the events at Sea Otter, the dual slalom is the most eagerly anticipated, a chance to see head-to-head battles between some of the world's fastest riders as they duke it out on the berm and jump filled course that's situated on the grassy hillside just outside of the show's exhibition area. Andrew Neethling is one of the heavy hitters that will be rolling up to the starting line on Saturday, this time aboard a new prototype from Polygon called the Dirt SS.
The aluminum frame was built with input from Sam Reynolds, Polygon's resident slopestyle and freeride specialist, but its short travel and stiff frame should also work well on the dual slalom course. Neethling has his built up with a 140mm fork up front to go along with the 120mm of rear travel. Running the slightly longer fork up front slackens the head angle and slows down the steering a bit, which should help with the different demands of slalom versus slopestyle.
The last prototype short-travel bike we saw from Polygon used a link driven single pivot design, but Polygon went with a Horst Link layout for this bike, positioning the rearmost pivots on the chainstays. The rear linkage has been built to be as stiff as possible to help the bike handle the abuse doled out by Polygon's riders.
Box Components provide the bike's derailleur, shifter, and the spacer that allows a Shimano cassette to be converted to 7 speeds. The 26” e*thirteen wheels are shod with a Kenda Honey Badger in the front, and a low-profile semi-slick design that should be well suited to the dusty, hardpacked course.
When will the Dirt SS be available? Unfortunately, the answer is 'probably never.' As fun as owning a slopestyle / slalom bike seems, the reality is that the demand is still very, very small, and at this time there aren't any plans to bring a production version to market.
This post was extracted from Pink Bike.